Are life coaches allowed to admit they sometimes feel like crap? Well now I’m admitting it. Sometimes I get hit with something that really floors me and I begin to doubt all my abilities. No matter how good I get at coaching and self-empowerment, problems still show up. “What am I doing wrong?!”
Actually, I’m probably not doing anything wrong at all. Life, as it turns out, has a real talent for throwing us curveballs and hitting us where it hurts. I want to share an insight with you that has made a huge difference in how I experience setbacks and difficulties. And the insight is this – we don’t have to change the situation in order to get rid of the problem – we only have to change our experience of the situation.
As it turns out, problems seem like real situations in the world, but they are actually just stories with an emotional charge. These stories are held in place by three things:
- Our focus (what we put our attention on)
- Our physiology and posture (our physical state)
- Our language (how we describe the situation)
Superstar coach Anthony Robbins calls these three aspects the Triad, and it’s the foundation of the rapid transformations he creates in people. When we change one or more of them, our perception of the situation shifts and the problem begins to dissolve. When we no longer see a problem, we get out of reactivity and into a more empowered state where we begin to find real solutions.
The Triad in action
Suppose you’re struggling with a money issue. Here’s how you might change your experience of it from a problem to an opportunity:
- Focus: Stop focusing on the lack and what you can’t afford. The more you think about what’s missing, the more uncomfortable you become and the more you block any possible solution that might be coming through. Shift focus to what you do have and express appreciation for that. Bless the abundance of water that comes out of the plumbing in your home, praise the trees and the flowers that are blooming freely for everyone to enjoy. When you focus on the state of having, you gain access to the ideas and solutions that support that state.
- Physiology/posture: Notice how you hold your body when you think about your lack of money. Take a deep breath and relax it. Let your shoulders relax and let your breathing become slow, deep and even. Breathe into any areas of your body that feel constricted and closed up. This creates actual biochemical and nervous system changes that open your heart and mind to new ideas and solutions. See if you can access the feeling and body posture that would go with having a boundless supply of money.
- Language: Watch the language you are using to describe the situation. Even thinking of it in terms of the word “problem” makes it into a problem. Notice danger phrases like “I can’t”, “I don’t have enough”, “they’ll never let me”, “I don’t know how”, “I can’t afford it”. We cement problems in place by repeatedly languaging them as problems. Rather try phrases like, “I’m sure I can”, or “I’m open to possibilities”.
When you take care of these three aspects of your experience you will get out of victim mode and jump back into the driving seat of your life. This is not about controlling the outcome but about shifting your vibration from the energy of the problem to the energy of the solution. Problems and solutions are both perceptions, and the only thing that separates them is focus, physiology and language.
So, try it on a current challenge you’re facing and see what happens.
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